I'm trying to learn proper hip rotation during a walking gait and am stuck finding a specific example for the hip rotation cycle.

When walking, your hips are supposed to rotate while taking a step.

Should the hip of the leg taking a step move

  • before the leg starts to make a step, sort of guiding the leg.
  • at the same moment the leg starts to make a step.
  • after the leg starts to make a step, letting the leg guide the hip.
  • in a different manner than these.
  • 1
    Hinge at hip merely means that there is bending at the joint. I'm curious about step 5. Given that "pushing off" with the foot is an extension of the foot, I don't see how that is possible while also keeping the heel planted. Why are you asking how to walk? Unless you have some sort of odd imbalance (In which case you should be talking to a PT or similar), walking is...well...walking. It's instinctive and doesn't really need to be changed according to some arbitrary "form".
    – JohnP
    Feb 1, 2013 at 19:19
  • Mostly for exercise purposes, I'd like to make certain I'm enforcing proper technique.
    – Kirk
    Feb 1, 2013 at 20:07
  • 2
    @JohnP disagree in as much as almost everyone who works in offices does have an odd imbalance in the form of absolute jank hip-mobility that they just don't get PT for until after it gets so bad they have pain or need surgery. Learning to walk with good mechanics is definitely worthwhile for people shlumping around with super tight hip flexors and permanently cranked turn-out.
    – Affe
    Feb 1, 2013 at 22:26
  • 2
    @Kirk Are you actually asking about hip rotation, or hip flexion? "hinge at the hip" is referring to flexion
    – Affe
    Feb 1, 2013 at 22:36
  • @Affe I am asking about hip rotation in relation to walking. I removed the bottom half of my question since that wasn't my main question, just some details I thought may be related.
    – Kirk
    Feb 1, 2013 at 23:52

1 Answer 1


Hinge at the Hip is a queue to use your actual hip flexors to lift the leg in the socket rather than tilting the pelvis. Go stand in front of a mirror and pick up one leg. See your pelvis shift and you drop on the other side to make room? Now hold on to something with your hands, squeeze your low abs (but not your glutes) and lift the leg again, concentrating on being strong in the standing leg and keeping your pelvis stable. That's working the hip-fold instead of cranking the rest of your body around to hide lousy hip mobility. You should be able to do that with arms held out to the sides, without your pelvis moving.

No comment on the actual effectiveness of the source material you're referencing, do not have any knowledge of that author's work.

  • @Kirk don't have an answer for you, as I am by no means an expert on human movement patterning. As a student of it, I can say I have never been taught or read that anything other than knees forward, feet straight is mechanically correct desirable positioning. Don't know why one should introduce hip rotation to walking if you don't need it and are already comfortably walking with a straight knee and ankle. What was your source for the assertion in the original question? I would like to read it.
    – Affe
    Feb 2, 2013 at 20:47
  • Here is the answer I linked to <fitness.stackexchange.com/a/6174/4510>. I only used this as an example describing what may be a proper step. I'm hoping to find an answer to the hip rotation, but I'll see if I can contact a physical therapist on their opinion.
    – Kirk
    Feb 2, 2013 at 23:30

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